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2 Samuel 13Amplified Bible (AMP)

Amnon and Tamar

13 It happened afterwards that Absalom the son of David had a beautiful sister whose name was Tamar, and Amnon [her half brother] the son of David was in love with her. Amnon was so frustrated because of his [half-] sister Tamar that he made himself sick, for she was a virgin, and Amnon thought it impossible for him to do anything to her. But Amnon had a friend whose name was Jonadab the son of Shimeah, David’s brother; and Jonadab was a very shrewd (cunning) man. He said to Amnon, “Why are you, the king’s son, so depressed morning after morning? Will you not tell me?” And Amnon said to him, “I am in love with Tamar, my [half-] brother Absalom’s sister.” Jonadab said to him, “Go to bed and pretend you are sick; and when your father [David] comes to see you, say to him, ‘Just let my sister Tamar come and serve me food, and let her prepare it in my sight, so that I may see it and eat it from her hand.’” So Amnon lay down and pretended to be sick; and when the king came to see him, Amnon said to the king, “Please let my sister Tamar come and make me a couple of cakes in my sight, so that I may eat from her hand.”

Then David sent word to the house for Tamar, saying, “Go now to your brother Amnon’s house, and prepare some food for him.” So Tamar went to her brother Amnon’s house, and he was in bed. And she took dough and kneaded it, and made cakes in his sight, and baked them. She took the pan and dished them out before him, but he refused to eat. And Amnon said, “Have everyone leave me.” So everyone left him [except Tamar]. 10 Then Amnon said to Tamar, “Bring the food into the bedroom, so that I may eat from your hand.” So Tamar took the cakes she had made and brought them into the bedroom to her [half-] brother Amnon. 11 When she brought them to him to eat, he took hold of her and said, “Come, lie with me, my sister.” 12 She replied, “No, my brother! Do not violate me, for such a thing is not done in Israel; do not do this disgraceful thing! 13 As for me, how could I get rid of my shame and disgrace? And you, you will be considered one of the fools in Israel. So now, just speak to the king [about taking me as your wife], for he will not withhold me from you.” 14 But he would not listen to her; and since he was stronger than she, he violated her and lay with her.

15 Then Amnon became extremely hateful toward her, for his hatred toward her was greater than the love which he had for her. And Amnon said to her, “Get up and get out!” 16 But she said, “No, because this wrong of [a]sending me away is worse than the other that you have done to me!” But he would not listen to her. 17 Instead, he called his young man who was his personal servant and said, “Now throw this woman out of my presence and bolt the door behind her.” 18 Now Tamar was wearing [b]a [long-sleeved] robe of various colors; for that is how the virgin daughters of the king dressed themselves in robes. Then Amnon’s personal servant took her out and bolted the door behind her. 19 So [c]Tamar put dust on her head [in grief] and tore the long-sleeved robe which she had on, and she put her hand on her head and went away crying out [for help].

20 So her brother Absalom said to her, “Has your brother Amnon been with you? But now keep silent, my sister; he is your brother; [d]do not take this matter to heart.” So Tamar remained secluded in her brother Absalom’s house. 21 Now when King David heard about all these things, he was very angry [but failed to take any [e]action]. 22 But Absalom did not speak to Amnon either good or bad; for Absalom hated Amnon because he had violated his sister Tamar.

23 Now it came about after two full years that Absalom had sheepshearers at Baal-hazor near Ephraim, and Absalom invited all the king’s sons [to a party].

Absalom Avenges Tamar

24 Absalom came to [his father] the king and said, “Behold, your servant has sheepshearers; please let the king and his servants go with your servant.” 25 But the king said to Absalom, “No, my son, we should not all go, for we will be a burden to you.” Although Absalom [strongly] urged David, still he would not go, but he gave him his blessing. 26 Then Absalom said, “If not, then at least let my brother [f]Amnon go with us.” And the king said to him, “Why should he go with you?” 27 But Absalom urged him [again], and he let Amnon and all the king’s sons go with him.

28 Now Absalom commanded his servants, “Notice carefully, when Amnon’s heart is joyous with wine, and when I say to you, ‘Strike Amnon,’ then kill him. Do not be afraid; have I not commanded you myself [and in doing so have I not taken full responsibility for his death]? Be courageous and brave.” 29 So the servants of Absalom did to Amnon just as Absalom had commanded. Then all the king’s sons got up, and every man mounted his mule and fled.

30 Now it happened while they were on the way [back home], that the [exaggerated] report came to David, “Absalom has killed all the king’s sons, and not one of them is left.” 31 Then the king stood and tore his clothes and lay on the ground [in mourning]; and all his servants were standing by with their clothes torn. 32 But Jonadab the son of Shimeah, David’s brother, responded, “Do not let my lord assume that all the king’s sons have been put to death; for only Amnon is dead. This act of revenge has been on Absalom’s mind since the day Amnon violated his sister Tamar. 33 So now, do not let my lord the king take the report to heart that all the king’s sons are dead; for Amnon alone is dead.”

34 Now Absalom fled. And the young man who kept watch looked up, and behold, many people were coming from the road behind him by the side of the mountain. 35 And Jonadab said to the king, “Look, the king’s sons are coming. It has turned out just as your servant said.” 36 And when he finished speaking, the king’s sons came, and they raised their voices and wept; and the king and all his servants also wept very bitterly.

37 But Absalom fled and went to [his mother’s father] Talmai the son of Ammihud, king of Geshur. And David [g]mourned for his son every day. 38 So Absalom fled and went to Geshur, and was there for three years. 39 And the heart of King David longed to go to Absalom; for he was comforted regarding Amnon, since he was dead.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Samuel 13:16 Sending her out like this would cast suspicion on Tamar’s behavior.
  2. 2 Samuel 13:18 Lit a garment of extremities. This robe must have been similar to the one Jacob (Israel) made for Joseph in Gen 37:3.
  3. 2 Samuel 13:19 Because she had been forced and violated in this way she would no longer be acceptable to another man as a wife.
  4. 2 Samuel 13:20 Absalom consoled and quieted Tamar so that he could plan his revenge.
  5. 2 Samuel 13:21 According to Jewish law, Amnon should have been executed for the rape of his half sister.
  6. 2 Samuel 13:26 Amnon was David’s eldest son and first in the line of succession.
  7. 2 Samuel 13:37 David’s failure to act when Amnon raped his half-sister Tamar ultimately cost him two of his sons not just one.
Amplified Bible (AMP)

Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

2 Samuel 13New International Version (NIV)

Amnon and Tamar

13 In the course of time, Amnon son of David fell in love with Tamar, the beautiful sister of Absalom son of David.

Amnon became so obsessed with his sister Tamar that he made himself ill. She was a virgin, and it seemed impossible for him to do anything to her.

Now Amnon had an adviser named Jonadab son of Shimeah, David’s brother. Jonadab was a very shrewd man. He asked Amnon, “Why do you, the king’s son, look so haggard morning after morning? Won’t you tell me?”

Amnon said to him, “I’m in love with Tamar, my brother Absalom’s sister.”

“Go to bed and pretend to be ill,” Jonadab said. “When your father comes to see you, say to him, ‘I would like my sister Tamar to come and give me something to eat. Let her prepare the food in my sight so I may watch her and then eat it from her hand.’”

So Amnon lay down and pretended to be ill. When the king came to see him, Amnon said to him, “I would like my sister Tamar to come and make some special bread in my sight, so I may eat from her hand.”

David sent word to Tamar at the palace: “Go to the house of your brother Amnon and prepare some food for him.” So Tamar went to the house of her brother Amnon, who was lying down. She took some dough, kneaded it, made the bread in his sight and baked it. Then she took the pan and served him the bread, but he refused to eat.

“Send everyone out of here,” Amnon said. So everyone left him. 10 Then Amnon said to Tamar, “Bring the food here into my bedroom so I may eat from your hand.” And Tamar took the bread she had prepared and brought it to her brother Amnon in his bedroom. 11 But when she took it to him to eat, he grabbed her and said, “Come to bed with me, my sister.”

12 “No, my brother!” she said to him. “Don’t force me! Such a thing should not be done in Israel! Don’t do this wicked thing. 13 What about me? Where could I get rid of my disgrace? And what about you? You would be like one of the wicked fools in Israel. Please speak to the king; he will not keep me from being married to you.” 14 But he refused to listen to her, and since he was stronger than she, he raped her.

15 Then Amnon hated her with intense hatred. In fact, he hated her more than he had loved her. Amnon said to her, “Get up and get out!”

16 “No!” she said to him. “Sending me away would be a greater wrong than what you have already done to me.”

But he refused to listen to her. 17 He called his personal servant and said, “Get this woman out of my sight and bolt the door after her.” 18 So his servant put her out and bolted the door after her. She was wearing an ornate[a] robe, for this was the kind of garment the virgin daughters of the king wore. 19 Tamar put ashes on her head and tore the ornate robe she was wearing. She put her hands on her head and went away, weeping aloud as she went.

20 Her brother Absalom said to her, “Has that Amnon, your brother, been with you? Be quiet for now, my sister; he is your brother. Don’t take this thing to heart.” And Tamar lived in her brother Absalom’s house, a desolate woman.

21 When King David heard all this, he was furious. 22 And Absalom never said a word to Amnon, either good or bad; he hated Amnon because he had disgraced his sister Tamar.

Absalom Kills Amnon

23 Two years later, when Absalom’s sheepshearers were at Baal Hazor near the border of Ephraim, he invited all the king’s sons to come there. 24 Absalom went to the king and said, “Your servant has had shearers come. Will the king and his attendants please join me?”

25 “No, my son,” the king replied. “All of us should not go; we would only be a burden to you.” Although Absalom urged him, he still refused to go but gave him his blessing.

26 Then Absalom said, “If not, please let my brother Amnon come with us.”

The king asked him, “Why should he go with you?” 27 But Absalom urged him, so he sent with him Amnon and the rest of the king’s sons.

28 Absalom ordered his men, “Listen! When Amnon is in high spirits from drinking wine and I say to you, ‘Strike Amnon down,’ then kill him. Don’t be afraid. Haven’t I given you this order? Be strong and brave. 29 So Absalom’s men did to Amnon what Absalom had ordered. Then all the king’s sons got up, mounted their mules and fled.

30 While they were on their way, the report came to David: “Absalom has struck down all the king’s sons; not one of them is left.” 31 The king stood up, tore his clothes and lay down on the ground; and all his attendants stood by with their clothes torn.

32 But Jonadab son of Shimeah, David’s brother, said, “My lord should not think that they killed all the princes; only Amnon is dead. This has been Absalom’s express intention ever since the day Amnon raped his sister Tamar. 33 My lord the king should not be concerned about the report that all the king’s sons are dead. Only Amnon is dead.”

34 Meanwhile, Absalom had fled.

Now the man standing watch looked up and saw many people on the road west of him, coming down the side of the hill. The watchman went and told the king, “I see men in the direction of Horonaim, on the side of the hill.”[b]

35 Jonadab said to the king, “See, the king’s sons have come; it has happened just as your servant said.”

36 As he finished speaking, the king’s sons came in, wailing loudly. The king, too, and all his attendants wept very bitterly.

37 Absalom fled and went to Talmai son of Ammihud, the king of Geshur. But King David mourned many days for his son.

38 After Absalom fled and went to Geshur, he stayed there three years. 39 And King David longed to go to Absalom, for he was consoled concerning Amnon’s death.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Samuel 13:18 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain; also in verse 19.
  2. 2 Samuel 13:34 Septuagint; Hebrew does not have this sentence.
New International Version (NIV)

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